A former Old Town resident who was a finalist for the University of Maine athletic director’s job in 2014 is now one of three finalists for the same position.
The university will be interviewing candidates this week to replace Ken Ralph, who left for the same job at Southwestern University in Texas. UMaine President Joan Ferrini-Mundy will decide who gets the job with a final choice expected later this month.
The one with ties to the region is Scott Kull, who was the deputy athletics director for external operations at the University of Utah. The other finalists alongside him are Jude Killy, the deputy director of athletics at the University of Miami in Ohio, and Dr. Renae Myles Payne, who was an associate athletic director at the University of Miami in Florida.
A source familiar with UMaine’s hiring process confirmed the names of the finalists but requested anonymity because they were not at liberty to share them. A university spokesperson did not immediately respond to a request for comment.
Kull was up for the job when Karlton Creech landed it eight years ago. He was raised in a military family and lived in Old Town from age five until he moved to western New Hampshire, where he graduated from high school. Before his time at Utah, he worked in athletic departments at the University of South Florida (2016-18), Texas Christian University (2005-16), Florida State University (1994-97), Ohio State University (1994-97) and other major schools.
Kull said on Friday he left Utah on July 31 “to put 100 percent into landing the Maine job. It has been a dream of mine.”
In 2019, Kull was listed among the power players in college sports by the Sports Business Journal. The list features administrators recognized as among the most innovative, impactful and creative leaders in the country.
He played an important role in the growth of the fundraising efforts at Utah. He oversaw the sales process for prime seating at an $85 million stadium. The fundraising included $40 million in philanthropic gifts, $10 million in capital gifts and $35 million in ticket sales.
Kull graduated from Otterbein College in Ohio and earned a master’s degree from Ohio State University.
Myles Payne, who received the NCAA Division I Administrator of the Year Award from Women’s Leaders in College Sports in 2019, was responsible for the oversight and development of department policies and procedures at Miami. She has also worked at Winthrop University of South Carolina and the University of Connecticut.
Originally from Clarksdale, Mississippi, she graduated from the University of Southern Mississippi and earned a master’s degree in sports administration from Northwestern State University in Louisiana and a Ed. D in higher education administration from the University of Pittsburgh.
Killy has been at the University of Miami in Ohio since 2008 and has received five promotions during his time there.
He has overseen everyday operations of the athletic department, athletic development, equipment and the budget and has been the top sports administrator for the football, men’s basketball, baseball and men’s swimming and diving teams. During his time at Miami, he has served as the campaign manager for the $80 million Graduating Champions Campaign.
Prior to coming to Miami, he was the director of the annual fund campaign and athletic development operations at the University of Pittsburgh. He also spent four years as an assistant administrator for the National Association of Collegiate Directors of Athletics.
He graduated from John Carroll University in Ohio and earned a master’s degree from Ohio University.
Correction: Both Kull and Myles Payne have left their most recent athletic department jobs. This story was updated to note that they are not currently employed at the University of Utah and the University of Miami in Florida, respectively.